Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What are "selfer" plants?
(a) Plants that pollinate themselves
(b) Plants that contain a high level of Vitamin B
(c) Plants that can be started by people
(d) Plants that take more soil nutrients than other plants

2. Why were domesticated plants able to spread from the Fertile Crescent to nearby areas more easily?
(a) They were already adapted to the people's tastes
(b) They were already adapted to the climate
(c) Reindeer spread the seeds
(d) Differing amounts of rainfall

3. Where did things like agriculture and writing develop?
(a) Warm climates
(b) The Arctic Circle
(c) North America
(d) Western Europe

4. Which of the following was one of the earliest crops?
(a) Dates
(b) Olives
(c) Wheat
(d) Fruit trees

5. What allowed the Maori to have specialists and warriors as part of their society?
(a) Stored crop surpluses
(b) Greater intelligence
(c) Weapons
(d) A capitalist society

Short Answer Questions

1. Food production meant what to hunting and gathering societies?

2. One argument that people have made is that what stimulated development in Western Europe?

3. Groups who remained hunter-gatherers into the twentieth century lived in what types of areas?

4. The ability of societies to have non-food producing specialists, like soldiers, was due to what?

5. What effect did infectious diseases have on the encounter between the Spanish and Incas?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do historical sciences differ from non-historical sciences?

2. Why does Diamond believe that China was once more diverse than it is now?

3. What happened in the encounter between the Incas and the Spanish?

4. Why do some scholars argue that Europeans expanded and conquered others but China did not?

5. How are seeds dispersed?

6. Why does Diamond object to many of the traditional views on the uneven distribution of wealth and power?

7. Why is the axis of a continent important?

8. Why did plant domestication and food production did not develop earlier in some of the ecologically better areas?

9. What is surprising about where food production developed early?

10. What does Diamond argue determined when a group would adopt food production?

(see the answer keys)

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